Precision Guided Firearms Don’t Scare Me, Skynet Does (specs, video)

Written by Mat Lee

TrackingPoint’s precision guided firearms, capable of hitting targets from 500 yds to 2 miles, don’t scare Mat Lee as much as PGF-armed Googlebots do. Here’s his take on the smart rifles he saw at CES 2014. — Call it the rifle that never misses. It’ll kill people up to two miles away — and make any shooter shoot like a pro, regardless of skill. Scared yet? Our Mat Lee, Ant Pruitt, Kerry Kinsey and Chris Miller took a look at the smart rifle from TrackingPoint. Here’s Mat Lee with more.

Hardcore geek hardware got deadly at CES 2014. So-called precision guided firearms (PGF) showed up in the form of a smart rifle from Austin’s TrackingPoint. This was point and shoot technology to an extreme. A PGF rifle will shoot accurately up to two miles — and it won’t miss anything at all at 500 yards, exec Oren Schauble told us. This during our live broadcast from the booth at ShowStoppers. Chris Miller, Ant Pruitt and I were there. Scroll below the fold to see my colleague Kerry Kinsey’s video interview with Schauble …

Image Credit: Michael Olsen

Image credit: Michael Olsen

The Austin firm announced the new TrackingPoint 500 Series ARs at ShowStoppers. Scroll below the fold to see the TrackingPoint demonstration video showing the company’s Tag Track Xact tech in action. Find specs on TrackingPoint’s precision guided firearms below, too.

Image Credit: Michael Olsen

Image credit: Michael Olsen

As promised, here’s our Kerry Kinsey’s interview with Tracking Point execs.

Video: Kerry Kinsey for aNewDomainTV, producer Justin Webb, shooter Marc Klempf

And here’s TrackingPoint’s video …

Video: TrackingPoint demonstration video

The three precision guided firearm (PGF) rifles available, offered in 7.62, .300 BLK and 5.56 calibers, incorporate the company’s groundbreaking Tag Track Xact technology.

Image Credit: TrackingPoint

Image credit: TrackingPoint

The Smart AR Linux powered scope is built on a custom AR frame made by Georgia-based firearms manufacturer Daniel Defense, we discovered.

Now if the name Daniel Defense sounds familiar to you that is probably because it was recently in the news. Its commercial was banned from the NFL Super Bowl. Sportsgrid’s Jake O’Donnell described the commercial as “terrifying.”

trackingpoint specs

Image credit: TrackingPoint

The point is that TrackingPoint has developed a whole integrated platform here. The firm coined the term precision guided firearm (PGF).

With its networked tracking scope the PGF records audio and video of your shots from the time you tag the target and for 10 to 15 seconds, along with still photos. The PGF is powered by a Linux ballistic calculator, laser rangefinder and built in Wi-Fi, so you can beam your scope to your tablet. Check out the apps here on the TrackingPoint site. You can stream to either Android or Apple iOS.

The PGF also has a guided trigger that’s hardwired to the scope to eliminate trigger jerk, giving you the most-accurate shot ever, at least up to 500 yards, no matter how experienced you are. If you can shoot well, it’s possible to engage targets scrupulously rapidly up to every two seconds.

The model we saw at ShowStoppers is the TP AR300 BLK PGF. Here’s some quick stats from the TrackingPoint site.

 … 300 AAC Blackout caliber, which was originally designed to give the shooter a 30 caliber projectile which could be fired out of the AR platform without an increase in magazine size while still utilizing a standard bolt.  The 300 AAC Blackout is 7.62x35mm, which gives the shooter similar ballistic qualities as the .308 and the 7.62x39mm, the AK round, without having to give up the lightweight 5.56mm/AR platform. The 300 AAC Blackout can still utilize standard AR magazines without a reduction in magazine capacity. Unlike the 7.62x39mm, the 300 AAC Blackout cartridge is still light on the shoulder with similar recoil to the 5.56mm.”

If you want something that shoots a bit further, there is always the XS1. I’ll let you read the stats from their site, but just know that this is some seriously-awesome firepower. Perfect for any zombie apocalypse compound. Seriously, the XS1 features the longest effective range with a Tag Track Xact (TTX) of up to 1,200 yards.

Just think about that for a second. That’s 12 football fields.


Image credit: TrackingPoint

TrackingPoint also makes the scope and trigger and tests the life cycle ballistics to see how long the barrels last. When you invest in one of these babies, you’re definitely getting your bitcoins worth.

I never did ask if they accept Bitcoins. I will check on that.

Execs told us they have the bolt action on back order, which you can get your hands on in about two or three months. The new ones will be available October 1 and they are taking pre-orders now. If you will be in Austin for SXSW 2014, you’ll find the firm there doing some live fire demos. It’s their hometown, after all.

The cost? About $9,950 for the whole thing.

As I mentioned above, a commercial from the company that provides the AR frame for these smart rifles, Daniel Defense, was banned from the NFL Super Bowl. Sportsgrid’s Jake O’Donnell described the commercial as “terrifying.”

 Is it?

Decide for yourself after viewing it here on YouTube.

I watched the video and I don’t really get the controversy — but whatever. I guess some people are just scared of guns. I’m way more afraid of crazy humans who use the guns, not the guns in themselves. But that’s a topic for a whole different show — a whole different website.

The main thing alarming people here is that these smart rifles are so deadly accurate.

I’m more alarmed about Skynet — and a future where Google robots armed with these smart rifles finally decide the human race is just one big pain in the ass. But I digress again.

I do think this gun tech will revolutionize the way hunter’s safety is taught in the United States. If the instructor can beam what his smart scope is seeing into the classroom, students would learn in a far-more-intuitive manner. They’d actually see what looking through the scope is like. For instance, the animal in scope A is okay to shoot at (I guess), but the animal in scope B that resembles a grumpy cat is not.

I’m sure you can imagine all sorts of scenarios that don’t involve grisly, murderous outcomes. Can’t you?

Keep checking back here on aNewDomain for more great CES 2014 and ShowStoppers coverage. Check out my picture gallery on Google+ and on our  aND TV YouTube page.

For, I’m Mat Lee.

Based in Kalispell, Montana, Mat Lee is a senior editor and podcaster at He is yet another teamBYTE vet on our edit team and he hosts the popular Yet Another Tech Show (YATS). He is an Android man. Email Mat at and follow him on Google+, where he is +Mat Lee.

NEW SHOWSTOPPERS_wht bkgrd_no frame